Ganassi Duo Seeks More Indy History
By: Jeff Wackerlin - @JWackerlin Twitter and Instagram on July 27, 2012 | 11:29 A.M. EST
McMurray qualified the No. 02 Chevron BMW/Riley in the sxith position. (Photo: Jeff Wackerlin)
INDIANAPOLIS - Juan Pablo Montoya and Jamie McMurray will each have two opportunities to make some more history at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for owner Chip Ganassi this weekend.
Prior to running in Sunday's Crown Royal Presents the Curtiss Shaver 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race, both Montoya and McMurray will team with 2008 Indy 500 winner Scott Dixon to drive the No. 02 Chevron BMW/Riley in Friday's inaugural GRAND-AM Rolex Series race at the famed 2.5-mile speedway.
When Montoya climbs behind the wheel of the Daytona Prototype in the three hour race - 4 p.m. (ET) start live on the Motor Racing Network - he will become the first driver to race in NASCAR, IndyCar, F1 and GRAND-AM at Indianapolis.
"This place is one of the biggest names of racetracks in the world," Montoya said. This is one of the places you want to race and be part of. I've been lucky enough to be in every series. I felt like in the test we had pretty good speed. So we'll see."
A win on Friday would not only add to Ganassi's long list of accomplishments at Indianapolis, but also to Montoya and McMurray's Indy resume that includes an Indy 500 (2000) and Brickyard 400 (2010) victory, respectively, for the Ganassi duo. Dixon's Indy 500 win was the third of five for Ganassi.
Like Montoya, McMurray is looking forward to running in his fifth career Rolex Series race - the first outside of Daytona International Speedway,
"It's an honor to get to be in this race," McMurray said. "It's a super cool idea, and it's definitely one of the perks of getting to drive for Chip is that the Rolex Race, the 24 hours of Daytona and then this coming up, it's super cool. I know that Juan and I are really excited to get to be here and be part of it."
With Friday just being dedicated to GRAND-AM, Montoya and McMurray will get their first laps in Sprint Cup at Indy in Saturday morning's practice session at 8:30 a.m. (ET).
McMurray, who has a 2.5 average finish in his last two Indy Sprint Cup starts, expects the cars that were strong last month on the newly-repaved Pocono Raceway will be the ones to watch this weekend.
"I think this has been a good track for us historically," McMurray said. "Normally if you ran well at Pocono, you ran well at Indy. That's going to be more so now because of the track being so much further. As rough as Pocono used to be, I don't see how that would ever correlate. But with the track being as smooth as it is now with the amount of grip, I think the guys that ran well at Pocono would run well here. We both ran well there.”